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2nd Half Shiga rally pops Golden Kings win bubble

Date Posted: 2008-11-21

Okinawa’s Ryukyu Golden Kings were beginning to feel a bit invincible, racking up a 9-0 Japan Professional Basketball Association start, and then they met the Shiga Lakestars.

The visiting Golden Kings beat Shiga 84-77 Sunday beyond the 25-points scoring of Jeff Newton, who also pulled down 10 rebounds, while teammate Shigeyuki Kinjo chalked up another 16 in the Okinawa win. Sunday’s rematch was another matter.

It looked like an easy win for Okinawa, coasting out of the first quarter with a 19-point lead at Shiga. Shiga Coach Bob Pierce had some strong motivating words for his squad during the break, though, and the Lakestars came roaring back to pull off an 81-75 win in handing Okinawa its first loss. Shiga outscored Okinawa 20-3 in the second quarter, then kept the pressure on throughout the second half.
Naoto Takushi popped in 20 points for the Golden Kings, with Anthony McHenry close with 17 and Jeff Newton scoring 16 while adding 11 rebounds in the losing cause.

The Ryukyu Golden Kings are soon to face the 5-5 Saitama Broncos, who dropped a pair to the Tokyo Apache over the weekend. Tokyo took the weekend opener 79-70, then followed up with a Sunday sweep on an 83-80 overtime squeaker.

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